We’re back at Disneyland visiting yet another Counter Service gem, the French Market!
I say “yet another” because Disneyland truly has some standout offerings when it comes to Counter Service. Therefore, narrowing down your options can be a difficult process. Today we’re exploring the reasons why the French Market is definitely worth more than a quick glance…
You’ll find the French Market in picturesque New Orleans Square, which lends to the laid-back — yet still fun and festive — vibe.
Service here is cafeteria-style: join the line inside, order your stuff, and bring it to the register. Easy-peasy!
A huge bonus to this set-up is that you’re able to see all of the food offerings right in front of you to help you make your decisions.
It is no wonder this is a favorite for many longtime Disneylanders. Service is friendly and helpful, and it has always been clean and organized — at least on my visits.
All seating is outdoors, but covered with awnings so you’re not sitting directly in the sunlight. Pretty simple, really; but it’s the view of New Orleans Square that helps you feel as though you’re still in the midst of all the action.
Best of all, if you’re lucky (or simply well-prepared), you can catch a performance by the Royal Street Bachelors, a terrific jazz trio that has been a mainstay in New Orleans Square since the land first opened.
Oh, and FYI — French Market is, of course, home to the Mint Julep Bar! You’ll find its window tucked in the outdoor area.
Don’t forget that this is also the spot to grab your Mickey-shaped Beignets!
But, wait… I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s see what the French Market proper has up its sleeve with regards to stuffing our faces .
It’s Southern fare and Cajun favorites here at the French Market! Po’ Boys, Red Beans & Rice, and Jambalaya make the list, along with salads, Slow-Roasted Louisiana Beef Stew, and Corn Chowder.
As we explore our options, you’ll notice something special about the way food is served at the French Market: items are served on real plates, with actual flatware. Nice!
Several entrees feature your choice of Artisan Breads, but I always have to check out the cornbread, having really enjoyed the cheddar cornbread on a previous trip. My more recent visit featured Jalapeño Cornbread as the choice du jour.
As I went through the line, I took a couple of surreptitious shots of plates for ya. Here’s a peek at the French Quarter Chicken from the House Specialties.
The Po’ Boys selection includes a Seasoned Shrimp Sandwich.
Options for the little ones include a Pasta with Marinara served with fruit and veggies. Other entree choices include Chicken Breast with Rice and good ol’ Mac and Cheese (you can also get the Mac and Cheese in the Toddler Meal portion, a concept I would love to see replicated in Disney World).
But my choices were pretty much set in stone before I even arrived!
I couldn’t resist trying the Creamy Corn Chowder because I’d been hearing some great things about it. And, truth be told, I was also sold on the famous Bread Bowl… with Mickey Ears, no less!
The enormous portion of creamy, rich, flavorful chowder fills the sourdough bread bowl to the tippy-top, and it’s garnished with a small mix of roasted corn and black-eyed peas (which would make this a great choice if you’re dining at the French Market on New Year’s Day, since eating black-eyed peas for New Year’s is said to bring good luck!).
This is a HUGE portion. H.U.G.E. It’s definitely an entree, so be prepared!
I also decided to go with one of the more traditional Cajun dishes on the menu: Jambalaya. My plate was prepared to order and made up of creole seafood, chicken, andouille sausage and vegetables served over dirty rice. And I selected some of that jalapeño cornbread to go with it.
I LUV jambalaya. You gotta love an everything-under-the-sun dish like this, especially when it’s so well-seasoned — just spicy enough. And talk about stick to your ribs!
Once again, Disneyland pretty much nailed the cornbread. There wasn’t as much jalapeño here as I anticipated, but it was still fresh and tasty, and up to par with the usual Disneyland standards when it comes to cornbread. Which are high. Just so you know.
No dessert for me this time (you saw the size of that Jambalaya!), but here’s a glimpse at a couple of choices available on my visit: Layered Chocolate Mousse Cake and Bananas Foster Cheesecake.
Desserts here do tend to change up with the seasons, so your options may vary. (Remember, this is where we enjoyed the Haunted Mansion Cake around Halloween.)
The French Market has it all, really: unique and well-crafted entree choices, a lovely setting, the chance to catch some classic Disneyland entertainment, and — thanks to the Mint Julep Bar — a couple of absolute Disneyland gems between the Julep and the Mickey Beignets. If you’re looking for quick-service that doesn’t feel or taste like quick-service, the French Market certainly fits the bill!
Have you visited Disneyland’s French Market? Let us know in the comments below!